Italy shuns the tradition in some countries of carrying over weekend public holidays to the Monday.
However, in 2016 workers will lose just two holidays to the weekend – a good return that offers one more day off than last year.
Anyone glancing at Italy’s calendar over the festive period will notice a bumper five public holidays within as many weeks.
But don’t expect it to last – after January 6th, Italians have to wait until the end of March for another national holiday.
Here’s the round-up:
January 1st – New Year’s Day (Friday)
January 6th – Epiphany (Wednesday)
March 28th – Easter (Monday)
April 25th – Liberation from Nazi-Fascism (Monday)
May 1st – Labour Day (Sunday)
June 2nd – Republic Day (Thursday)
August 15th – Assumption of Mary/Ferragosto (Monday)
November 1st – All Saints’ Day (Tuesday)
December 8th – Immaculate Conception (Thursday)
December 25th – Christmas Day (Sunday)
December 26th – Saint Stephen’s Day (Monday)
But don’t be surprised if you see shops shutting up on other days of the year. Different cities have their own celebrations, while the Catholic calendar is often used to determine feast days at a local level.
Although not a public holiday, March 17th is about the most patriotic day in the Italian calendar. In 2012, it was declared the date to celebrate national unity, the constitution, the national anthem and the flag.